The Bible tells one story; the Old Testament and the New are both part of that story. The message of scripture from beginning to end is how a holy God, perfect in righteousness, deals with humanity, which is fallen, broken and unrighteous. At the center of that story is Jesus.
There is a definite relationship between the old covenant and the new. I often describe Judaism as a analogy for Christianity. The Hebrews in the Old Testament are analogous in many ways to Christians of the New Testament. There are many similarities but we must be clear: the two are not the same. The Hebrews came out of Egypt on a mission; as Christians we should be on mission. But our mission is very different from their mission. Continue reading →
Matthew, Mark, Luke and John are the Gospels in that they tell the story of the life of Jesus. Jesus preaches in Mark 1 “repent and believe in the gospel.” More than those four books, gospel means good news. Jesus died for our sins; he is the way, the truth and the life; he brings the New Covenant, and we are no longer under the Law; all things things are part of the gospel message. Paul says the Law is bad news; it cannot make us righteous, only more guilty. But there is more to the Old Testament than the Law, and it’s not all bad news.
The Bible has many stories and characters, but only one message. (Have you read this?) The Old Covenant was about keeping the Law and bearing the mark of circumcision. Paul has many analogies about the difference between the Law and the Gospel; the Gospel brings life, the Law only brings death. But my point is that there is plenty of good news in the Old Testament as well. It is part of God’s message. Continue reading →